Universal Access To All Knowledge
Home Donate | Store | Blog | FAQ | Jobs | Volunteer Positions | Contact | Bios | Forums | Projects | Terms, Privacy, & Copyright
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload

Reply to this post | Go Back
View Post [edit]

Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Jun 10, 2011 5:56am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

Welcome to My Crib

Hey kids, can you keep a secret?
monte-crib.jpg
The Sound was incredible!

I was a Hippie kid when I taped the Grateful Dead in 1973

8track_inside.JPG
8-track tape cartridge
The first experience I had listening to my music "on-demand" was when I played stacks of 45-rpm records. This was in the 1950s when I was a little kid. The continuous-loop 8-track tape cartridge came out in the 1960s. Then we had 8-track tape players in our cars, along with a car radio. This was a huge breakthrough. For the first time ever, you had your music "on-demand" in your car. In 1971, I purchased an 8-track recording system to make my own 8-track tapes. I wanted to play hippie music from my albums in my car. Then I made 8-track tapes for lots of my hippie friends. I was "hooked on taping" from the very first moment.

I met a huge bunch of NJ Dead-heads one day in 1972. That evening, several carloads of us made a rendezvous to celebrate our meeting. Some redneck cops with a vendetta had a roadblock setup nearby the highway exit we had just taken. It was virtually an illegal stop, illegal search, and illegal seizure operation that was run by a bunch of rogue HICK cops in upstate NY. Sure, we were GUILTY of "driving while Hippie!" Five of us hippies got busted together in my car for some bullshit mary-jane possession charges.
dead-head_Monte-The_Bus_03.jpgThis is how, when, and where I got on The Bus. We all bonded strongly as brothers and sisters. Then I was introduced to my first collection of underground Dead tapes. Jimmy Watson shared his very impressive GD reel-to-reel tape collection with me. I was blown away by what I heard. It was a logical and natural step for me to morph from "a novice taper" into a real taper. I decided to go for it. I looked around for the best portable tape recorders. Cassettes were replacing 8-track tapes. I wasn't interested in buying a reel-to-reel recorder.
GratefulDead_Logo_sm.jpg

Sony TC-2850SD tape deck
sony-tc-2850sd.jpg

In 1973, I purchased a portable Sony TC-2850SD stereo cassette recorder, and a Sony ECM-99 stereo mic. Sony had recently released this new equipment into the USA. This model was the first portable cassette stereo tape recorder in the world. The taping kit I put together included 2 external portable speakers, AC power supply & battery charger, rechargeable battery pack, and a shoulder strap. The tape deck operated on 4 C-cell batteries. The stereo condenser mic needed a battery.

I listened to many hours of my copies of Dead tapes that Jimmy Watson gave me. I understood the problems that too much crowd noise, clapping, or yelling would cause when getting recorded onto the AUD tapes. I decided to mount my mic on a 3 or 4-foot mic-stand shaft, and hold my arm up high. It was a simple rig. The mic was easy to haul around, elevate quickly, or conceal quickly. I was able to get the mic over 10 feet high. Getting a good FOB location to tape GD was the hard part. Huge crowds and large venues were the next new experiences for the band, the audience, and the tapers. June 9 and June 10, 1973 shows were my first time Taping. I started taping the best local artists, musicians, and bands in my area. In 1973 I taped numerous GD shows performed in the northeast region. Read more about Audio and Video taping in Monte's Taper Handbook.

Taping the Grateful Dead at RFK Stadium • Washington, D.C. • 1973

using a stereo mic • FOB • hand-held on mic stand shaft • with my arm raised up high

sony-ecm-99-mic.gif
sony-ecm-99_description.jpg
sony-ecm-99_characteristics.jpg
sony-ecm-99_frequency_response.jpg
June 9, 1973 • Saturday show • dudes climbing on stagegd-73-06-09.jpg
It was Grateful Dead and Allman Brothers Band at RFK Stadium, Washington, D.C., for the weekend. My probation officer never knew the fact that I traveled out of state illegally to get here, without asking for his permission first. The crowds were estimated at 100,000. On Saturday, the Dead played before the Allmans. It was very hot, sunny, and over 100° F (39° C). Several of my friends and me were sitting high up in the stands. The GD were almost ready to take the stage. Our position relative to front of the soundboard platform: we were at about 2 o'clock high - not even close for taping. I was tripping on a double-dose of very good LSD. It was a 2-way hit of orange-barrel acid that I had dropped 2 hours earlier. We were smoking bowls of Nepalese hash and taking in the scenery.

The infield was pack-jammed with a huge crowd of thousands and thousands of people, like ants. I started having second thoughts about taping. I was wondering if I could handle going into that infield crowd. I was just sitting there peacefully - with my state-of-the-art portable cassette taping system. It was pathetic and ridiculous! The Dead began taking the stage. The show was getting ready to start. Jay Delia picked up on my anxiety. He sensed the urgency of that moment. Jay smiled and guided me up from my seat. He led the way down the steps. By the time we reached the infield, GD had started their show. Bobby was singing Promised Land.

Jay looked back at me. I pressed the record / play switches to start my tape deck. I made sure tape was rolling, and I had good audio signals metering on the VU displays. Then I raised my arm up high and pointed my mic at the stage. Jay parted the crowd in front of me. While I was taping, I followed right behind him as he pierced through the crowd. We went all the way to the FOB / dfc bull's eye. Keith was just finishing up his piano solo in the second break of Promised Land. No one in the crowd ever complained to me. What we were hearing, was by far, the most incredible and amazing sound I ever heard. Then Jer sings Deal.

Some punks were climbing up onto the stage during this show. Two of them get immortalized in the pic above. We were all pissed off at them. At several points you'll hear the crowd jeering these butt-wipes. Then you'll hear the crowd cheering as Hell's Angels security dudes come out and escort them away. There's plenty of fireworks captured on my tapes. You'll hear them going off during both GD shows: fire-crackers, bottle-rockets, cherry-bombs, and whistle-chasers.
June 10, 1973 • Sunday show • Jer with pigtails
rfk19730610_0977_cropped.jpg
People began streaming out of the stadium on Sunday after the Allman Brothers Band finished their show first. I was thinking there was maybe 40,000 in the crowd when GD took the stage after that. The RFK crowd was all mellowed out by this time. Getting to the best Taper's FOB / dfc location was easier for me after my Saturday taping fiasco. Now I had experience and confidence. I was there in no time.

People all around me were passing joints everywhere. I was tripping. GD was about to begin. I started recording. Firecrackers are going off when my friend Brett Richardson says to me, "Okay, go ahead." Tape was already rolling. Billy goes into his cymbal rolls. Bobby is heard counting it down. When the first chord is played, the crowd erupts into cheers. Jer sings Morning Dew. They sounded even better than they did on Saturday. GD played an incredibly sweet show.

Probably less than 20,000 people were there when the show ended with Sugar Magnolia. Then the crowd dwindles down to less than 10,000. Maybe it was down to 5,000. Jer comes back out on-stage 5 or 10 minutes later. He announces, "Stick around, we're gonna play some more with some of the Allmans." It was a jam with GD, Dickey Betts, Butch Trucks, and Merl Saunders. I remember this show ending nearly 8 hours after it began. It was a Modal Spectacle.

Both days, these AUD recordings epitomize the very best of the Grateful Dead "live sound" for the time. The prototype Wall of Sound, pictured above, is nailed by the sound crew and the Dead for both shows. The dead-center FOB location spatially captures sound from the stage PA, and from the two Aux PA towers on the rear infield - behind the taper. The sound delay from the Wall of Sound to the Aux PA towers adds a touch of ear candy as it rolls around RFK stadium. This was by far the best sound fidelity experience I ever heard come out of a PA System, period. It was a sensational orgy of sound. This is why so many people love the sound of AUDs so much - including myself.

This was first time for GD at RFK Stadium. They didn't return to play again at this famous venue until 13 years later, on July 6 and 7, 1986. Below is the 1995 RFK "GD after pic." It shows the huge infield GD crowd at RFK stadium. Imagine going through the Taper's Gauntlet on that infield. Imagine trying to get to the best FOB / dfc position - in this crowd. Well, today I wonder, how the heck did I do that?

Thanks to the Internet Archive, and thanks to eTree. These very generous people are largely responsible for organizing, sharing, and archiving all these tapes. Thanks to all the people who upgrade these tape recordings. Thanks to all the Tapers out there. Thanks to the Grateful Dead and the sound crew. Thanks to all trade-friendly bands and artists for letting us put these tapes here. Please purchase music from these bands and artists. For the time being, my other 1973 GD tapes will remain unpublished. We already have good quality AUDs on The Archive for these shows. Enjoy my other tapes. Listen to my Taper's highlight reel. This playlist features 2 songs from each circulating show that I taped: — play the audio stream for Monte's highlight reel — 4 hours, 15 minutes, 54 seconds. It swings!

I had a rewarding career working in electronics. It began when I started taping bands. Then I worked as a soundman for a couple of years. After that I spent 30 years performing electronics maintenance in pro-Video and pro-Audio systems. Thanks to The Bear. Thanks to all the Ampex people. I am very greatful that I lived an independent lifestyle. I love the great outdoors! Peace on Earth is what we need!
"We would all like to be able to live an uncluttered life, a simple life, a good life - and think about moving the whole human race ahead a step." - Jerry Garcia, 1967
Dick Latvala's notes for June 9
1973 RFK Stadium concert poster

logo.gif

• June 9 and June 10 — 2 AUD.fob + 2 SBD •
bit torrent — RFK Stadium 1973 GD boxed set

1995 RFK Stadium • GD after • bird's eye view of the Taper's Gauntlet
dead-head_Monte-rfk95_after.jpg

Dead Base search for Robert F. Kennedy Stadium

06-09-73 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
06-10-73 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
07-06-86 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
07-07-86 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
07-12-89 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
07-13-89 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
07-12-90 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
06-14-91 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
06-20-92 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
06-25-93 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
06-26-93 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
07-16-94 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
07-17-94 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
06-24-95 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.
06-25-95 — Robert F. Kennedy Stadium, Washington, D.C.

dead-head_Monte-gd-logo-dc-dead-new.jpg

Monte's Ford Pinto made it to RFK Stadium, Watkins Glen, & Roosevelt Stadium
it was destroyed when struck by a drunk driver who nearly killed me in Aug 1973
dead-head_Monte-pinto.jpg
the reflective mirror-image "TRUCK IT" bumper stickers are displayed for Dead-heads
designed & distributed in 1972 by my friend: signmaker & "Taper-pointman" Jay Delia



July 31 & Aug 1 — my new taping kit at Roosevelt Stadium
Nakamichi 550 cassette recorder with Dolby NR and Chromium tape bias
dead-head_Monte-nak_550.gif
Electro-Voice RE-15 mic was mounted on a 10-foot pole for July 31, 1973
— the pole came from a scaffolding rubble pile near the entrance gate —



Monte's master cassette tape, recorded FOB — at Roosevelt Stadium on July 31, 1973
during taping, this tape was confiscated from me by a huge Hell's Angels security dude
roosevelt-cassette.jpg
"reel 3" was taken from me by the GD's Hell's Angels — 30 seconds before the show ended!
Jimmy Watson retrieved it for me that night — he went backstage and GD gave it back to him

dead-head_Monte-horiz-rule-decorated.gif

Jerry's other opinion on Taping

dead-head_Monte-emoticon-420.gif

Jerry Garcia answers the Taping question

(Jer approves Taping in this 1981 Jerry Garcia interview)

Monte B Cowboy
monte_b_cowboy.jpg
Monte B Trail Grub
monte_Appalachian_Trail-1977.jpg


This post was modified by dead-head_Monte on 2011-06-10 12:56:23

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: clementinescaboose Date: Jun 10, 2011 9:28pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

Wow, GRATE post monte....that was quite an interesting read. Sound and taping is always a subject I would like to learn more about, I know so little! One thing I can't imagine is handling all that audio equipment on two hits. You must be one of those "clear headed" trippers haha. Not here, that shit gets right on top of me!

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: micah6vs8 Date: Jun 9, 2010 7:24am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

This is a great post . One of the best . Some history and crafted with love .
I love those smiley guys @ the end

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Jul 17, 2011 7:44am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

We now have some Super 8 footage of the June 10, 1973 show at RFK Stadium. Filmed by Bud Styple, this silent 4-minute film clip of Grateful Dead just surfaced on YouTube a few days ago.

8mm film of Grateful Dead on June 10, 1973

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: tim_oz Date: Jun 9, 2010 2:39pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

Monte! Wonderful post. A nice way to start the day with you guiding a trip back in time; drifting back to before I was born. Much appreciation and a thousand thanks for you crazy freaks who rolled tape!

On a related note I recently read the paper linked below, which discusses taping, trading, and collecting the Dead's music. I believe someone here posted about it. I found it a fascinating and insightful read - particularly the interviews with tapers. Like this post of yours, gaining some perspective on what it was like for the tapers is invaluable and adds another layer to the whole experience. And as mentioned, it is worth understanding the challenges for tapers back in the early days before an officially sanctioned taper section existed.

http://www.scribd.com/doc/26367749/Embaling-the-Grateful-Dead

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: deadheadnorway Date: Jun 10, 2011 7:59am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

What a great post : )

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: wisconsindead Date: Jun 11, 2011 9:57am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

very cool lil story. Neat to hear about the early taping days. When i was just a sparkle in my fathers drunk/stoned eyes.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: DeadRed1971 Date: Jun 9, 2010 3:30pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

I tip my hat to you:

Attachment: HPIM0443.JPG

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: timewarpwiretap Date: Jan 15, 2014 11:28am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Too much fun!!!!

That's news to me.......

Great post Monte - Thanks for sharing your bliss!!!

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: snow_and_rain Date: Jun 9, 2010 7:32am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

Great post man! I really appreciate the time and thought you put into these. One question: From your post I gather that you weren't taping until '71, yet I see the 4/23/69 Ark show listed under your name. That's a terrific show and one of my favorites from that era. Did you tape that one too?

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Jun 9, 2010 8:33am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

The list of my old tapes I have linked to is a search query for myself, on The Internet Archive. I didn't start taping shows myself until June 9 & 10, 1973. The 1969 Ark show comes up on my list because I worked on the upgrade last year. Same thing for Phil's 1959 trumpet-playing jazz tapes - I upgraded this show recently for Phil's 70th b'day.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: snow_and_rain Date: Jun 9, 2010 9:42am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

Oh I see. Well thanks for the upgrade then! That was a big contribution to a great show.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Capt. Cook Date: Jun 9, 2010 4:33pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

I'm curious Monte, I taped a bunch of shows myself in the early 80's just for my own passion, and a lot of venues had a No-Recording-No-Taping policy no matter what the GD might desire, The Hartford Civic Center comes to mind, and so getting your equipment into the arena/hall/theatre was, even beyond the double-doses running around your head, a tricky experience. I remember seeing tapers literally duct taping their rigs to their chests, their girlfriends hiding mics in all sorts of places. Taping is a passion and not always very easy given the circumstances. Your hells angels tape #3 is a great example of getting busted by the MAN, who ever that might be. Also, I frequently taped behind the drums, off the rear PA. Did you ever tape back there?

(I was born in '62 Monte and I can remember those 8-tracks, had dozens of them, and even had a recorder myself. Old School is right... You must have a million taping stories... Great post...)

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Jun 10, 2010 7:03am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

No, I never taped GD behind the drums. I always taped from FOB. I taped alone, but I usually went to shows with my friends. After 1973, I was taping other bands. I was becoming a soundman and getting into electronics. I developed a stealth taping kit that was pretty reliable for fooling security. I had a cheap guitar with the back removed from it. The guitar body fit perfectly over my tape deck. I carried this taping kit around in a guitar case. I successfully snuck into dozens of clubs and venues with this rig. I would insist that "I was a muscian," and I couldn't leave my axe outside in my car. I was too lazy to install a counter-weight in the guitar case to offset the weight of my tape deck. The security detail at Carnegie Hall busted me one night in 1974. They noticed the unnatural slant of my guitar case when I entered. They busted me red-handed taping secretly. My tape was confiscated, and I was escorted out the front door. This is the only "other time" I was caught taping.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: rap56 Date: Jun 10, 2011 7:47am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

PERFECT!

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Jun 9, 2010 7:36am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

Thanks, great post ! Also, I think people have no idea how hard it was to tape the Dead in those days , and how much we owe to those intrepid souls ( you included ) who did the work .

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: TragicMagic Date: Jun 10, 2011 9:20am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

Simply the most fascinating post I have seen yet! Thanks so much for sharing. For the past 10 minutes I was transported back in time and it was wonderful.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Pretty Vacant Date: Jun 9, 2010 9:35am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

Monte, this is your probation officer. Could I have a word?

[Love getting all the context, thank you.]

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Jim F Date: Jun 9, 2010 11:50pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

Great post, thank you for sharing, and most of all, thanks for taping!

I've been getting so wrapped up in the flood of great "TDIH" shows lately that I totally forgot about 6/9-10/73. Instead of pulling out the sbds like I usually would, I'm going with your auds. Aside from a slight lack of drums/cymbals in the high end, these sound absolutely fantastic for a first time endeavor in 1973. And...that GAUNTLET...how you pulled that off, I have no clue. You deserve some kind of award for that.

I never liked audience recordings much until recently. I always kindof saw them as a last resort, something to listen to if no board existed for the date, or to cover patches. I would say I was probably more tolerant of more modern audience tapes, the setups some people have been using these last 10 years especially are phenomenal. But for the older stuff, I usually passed on the aud's. Only in this last year have I gained a true appreciation for them, and have actually excitedly sought them out to listen to over the boards. I think it was gaining an appreciation for a GOOD matrix that really opened the door to my new appreciation, or love even, of audience recordings. It surprises me how less rowdy a lot of crowds seemed in the 70's compared to now. Nowdays you can have a stand 12 feet up and still hear the roar of chatter during a good Stella Blue or Morning Dew. Maybe the dope back then just made people shut up and listen more lol.

Anyway, 2 questions, if you don't mind-

It seems you abandoned your gear that you used for the RFK shows after a month or two and upgraded to the Nak. Any reason? Just that excited about taping that you just had to upgrade? I imagine that stuff wasn't cheap back then.

Secondly, it continues to amaze me how the earliest tapers not only got their gear in (I've heard many stories of how that was pulled off and that doesn't surprise me as much, despite the relatively large size of the state of the art gear at the time-not including batteries and blanks-considering somewhat more relaxed security and such), but in an era where you didn't want to get spotted with a mic stand (how ya'll got THOSE in really amazes me, I mean, a 10 FOOT POLE?), how did so many tapers get away with holding a big pole in the air? Would you just lower it when security happened to pass by? Did venue/staff just overlook it?

Anyway, thanks for all the backstory on those legendary concerts. It amazes me that so many people would leave after the ABB and not stay for the Dead. I never knew that about the crowd at that show, nor did I know that so many had left before the Dead/ABB jam set. It sounds like you didn't tape the Allman's either day, but I'm amazed that you had enough cassettes with you to capture the Dead as complete as you did. I imagine over the 2 days you used quite a lot of tapes, which I've heard weren't all that cheap back then either.

You're a champ for all you did, Monte. Nothing but thanks and respect from me!

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Jun 10, 2010 9:27am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: June 9 & 10 - Taper's Gauntlet reveals an Orgy of Sound

I purchased my Nakamichi 550 portable stereo cassette recorder in June, 1973. It was state-of-the-art, being the first portable stereo cassette recorder in the world to feature Dobly NR and Chromium Tape bias/EQ circuitry. This was a huge development. Tapers like myself were also making copies of other tapes. The Nak was a heavy device to haul around for taping shows. This deck weighed 11.25 pounds without batteries. It required 8 D-cell batteries to operate in the field. I believe I had the first Nakamichi 550 deck on the East Coast in 1973. I bought it from a very high-end audio dealer in NJ, named Roger Iselle. At his insistence, I had to pay him $500 cash up-front. I waited one month for my new deck to arrive. It was brand new when I taped GD at Roosevelt Stadium, July 31 and Aug 1.

The 10-foot pole "mic stand" at Roosevelt Stadium was a one-time wonder. Scaffolding rubble was piled up next to the entrance gate on July 31. I simply picked up the pole and walked inside with it. I was very surprised that no one stopped me. However, the Hell's Angels and GD security had noticed my mic on this pole. Jerry Moore was there taping that night. He didn't get busted.

Regarding the crowds exiting RFK Stadium early on June 10, it was clear to everyone there that: a) Some people were there just for the Allmans. Many of them left after ABB played first on Sunday. b) Some people were there just for the Dead. Duane Allman had died 20 months earlier, and some of us were less interested. c) Some people left early on Sunday because they had a long commute. Many people needed to get back for work on Monday. I don't think anyone in the crowd was from Wash DC. Everyone commuted there from up and down the east coast.

Terms of Use (10 Mar 2001)